Chapecoense have been declared as the 2016 Copa Sul-Americana champions
Chapecoense, which lost most of its players in an air crash last week, has been awarded the Copa Sudamericana championship by CONMEBOL.
CONMEBOL said on Monday after a virtual meeting that Chapecoense are the champion of the 2016 edition of the Copa Sul-Americana. The decision was already taken since last Thursday, as revealed by Globo Esporte, and was made official in a virtual council meeting of the organization, which has representatives of the 10 South American countries. The decision was communicated by CONMEBOL through their official website. The note issued by the confederation says Chapecoense "will receive all the honors and prerogatives of the 2016 Copa Sul-Americana champions." The text recognizes Atlético Nacional from Colombia as runners-up of the competition.
CONMEBOL also awarded Atlético Nacional its Fair Play award, and an amount of US $1 million for requesting to declare Chapecoense as champions. Chape now have a place guaranteed in the Recopa Sul-Americana 2017 [which will be played against Atlético Nacional de Medellín on a date to be defined] and in the group stages of the 2017 Copa Libertadores. CONMEBOL's decision strengthens Chape's finances. For the South American title, the Santa Catarina club will receive a prize of US $2 million. For a spot in the Recopa, another US $1 million, while the participation in the Libertadores will yield an additional US $600,000 per game. As they will play at least three matches in the group stage, the team from Santa Catarina will secure US $1.8 million.